Recent posts (max 20) - Browse or Archive for more

NVDA 2014.1 Released

NV Access would like to announce the release of NVDA 2014.1. To find out more or to download a copy, please see the official NV Access announcement.

There was one change after rc4:

  • When NVDA is configured to use French, the Input Gestures dialog now works correctly.

Thanks to everyone who helped to make this release possible.

NVDA 2014.1rc4 Released

NVDA 2014.1rc4 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2014.1 release.

Changes from rc3 to rc4:

  • Updated eSpeak to version 1.48.04 which fixes an important pronunciation issue for Dutch.

NVDA 2014.1rc3 Released

NVDA 2014.1rc3 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2014.1 release.

Changes from rc2 to rc3:

  • Updated eSpeak to version 1.48.03 which fixes some voice quality issues introduced in the 2014.1 development cycle.

NVDA 2014.1rc2 Released

NVDA 2014.1rc2 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2014.1 release.

Changes from rc1 to rc2:

  • Fixed tracking of the caret for some editable text fields that rely on text written to the screen such as the main text area in Balabolka. (#3901)

NVDA 2014.1rc1 Released

NVDA 2014.1rc1 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2014.1 release.

Seeking Testers for NVDA Quick Books 2014 Support

Recently, NV Access has been taking part in a project between My Blind Spot and Intuit to make Intuit Quick Books accessible to the blind. Thanks to some support from My Blind Spot to NV Access, we have been working on support for Quick Books 2014 in NVDA.

Please find a message below from Albert J Rizzi seeking testers for the new Quick Books support. Note that the code is not yet in next or master snapshots, but will be available to you as try builds if you choose to join the project. Eventually once stable, the code will either be an add-on freely available, or integrated into NVDA itself.

--- Message --- We are seeking experienced QuickBooks and NVDA users. Note that the test is not a training platform for either, so if you do not already know NVDA, or have a strong familiarity with QuickBooks, please do not apply for this test.

Interested individuals should contact info@myblindspot.org

Albert J. Rizzi, M.Ed. Founder and CEO My Blind Spot, Inc. 90 Broad Street - 18th Fl. New York, New York 10004 www.myblindspot.org PH: 917-553-0347 --- end message ---

NVDA Now Built now using Microsoft Visual Studio 2012

For more than 3 years, we have been compiling all C++ code in NVDA using Microsoft Windows SDK 7.0 (which includes MSVC 9.0). This SDK and compiler toolchain was released in 2008 and is quickly becoming outdated with regard to newer Operating System feature availability and C++ language improvements.

Therefore, we have made the decision to start building NVDA with the much newer Microsoft Visual Studio 2012 Express for Windows Desktop. This product, like Microsoft Windows SDK, is a free download from Microsoft which means anyone can get it, though building with Visual Studio 2012 Professional should also work.

As well as greater performance for many common C++ features including the STL and better security, compiling with Visual Studio 2012 allows us to write much cleaner code taking advantage of many new improvements to the C++ standard such as auto, lambdas and regular expressions.

However, there is one disadvantage, which is that code compiled with Visual Studio 2012 (in fact code compiled with Visual Studio 2010 or higher) cannot run on a system running something older than Windows XP Service Pack 2.

Although we understand this may be an annoyance to a small group, we believe that upgrading compilers means that we can continue to improve NVDA to meat today's requirements on Windows 7, 8 and beyond, while still allowing people to run it on XP (as long as they have kept it up to date).

To be specific, the minimum requirements will be Windows XP Service Pack 2, Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 or Windows XP X64 RTM.

It's worth noting a few points here:

  • Our statistics show each day no more than about 5 people running NVDA on Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 without the required Service Pack.
  • Several other products have also made this decision (most notably Mozilla Firefox).
  • Many people own Windows XP CDs with Service Pack 2 or 3 already applied.
  • It should be possible to install the latest Service Pack using Windows Narrator, or of course an older release of NVDA. For reference, here is a direct link to Service Pack 3 for Windows XP and the general page for service packs.

From now on, master and next snapshots will be compiled with Visual Studio 2012. NVDA 2014.1 when it is released around the end of February will also be compiled with Visual Studio 2012.

We have taken steps to ensure that people do not get caught with a broken NVDA in these situations. Firstly, NVDA itself will now detect if it can run on the Operating System, and if not it will show an error dialog explaining that the Operating System is too old. Secondly, the update server will no longer offer updates to older copies of NVDA running on Operating Systems older than XP Service Pack 2.

Inclusion of Misc Dependencies with Git Branches

Current and future developers of NVDA will be pleased to know that all dependencies of NVDA (excluding Git, Python and the Windows SDK) are now included via git submodules in each branch of the NVDA source code in Git. There is now no longer any need to download or install any dependencies other than the exclusions mentioned above.

However, you must remember to tell git to fetch and checkout the submodules.

For an existing master branch:

  • Firstly it's probably a good idea to remove the existing include/espeak directory, as espeak is now included as a git submodule as well.
  • Ensure your master branch is up to date:
    git pull
    
  • Initialize, fetch and checkout all new submodules:
    git submodule update --init
    

If you are cloning NVDA's git repository for the first time:

Add --recursive to the commandline to ensure you fetch and checkout all needed submodules; e.g.

git clone --recursive <url>

Once submodules have been initialised, after doing git pull in future, you should do git submodule update to ensure you always have the most up to date submodule revisions for the current branch revision.

These changes should hopefully make it easier for new developers to get started with NVDA's source. There is also the advantage of tracking exactly which dependencies were used with a given version of NVDA in future.

For those testing next or master snapshots, at time of writing there should be no visible change. However, it is worth noting that we now compile phoneme data for eSpeak, so if espeak or any of its languages seem to differ from previous snapshots, please let us know.

  • Posted: 2013-12-18 09:34 (Updated: 2013-12-18 10:34)
  • Author: mdcurran
  • Categories: (none)
  • Comments (0)

NVDA 2013.3 Released

NV Access would like to announce the release of NVDA 2013.3. To find out more or to download a copy, please see the official NV Access announcement.

As always, we would like to thank all contributors for making this release possible.

NVDA 2013.3rc4 Released

NVDA 2013.3rc4 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2013.3 release.

Changes from rc3 to rc4:

  • Fixed the problem where a triggered empty configuration profile was not deactivated when appropriate. (#3667)
  • Fixed an issue which caused the Freedom Scientific braille display driver to fail when the port was set to USB in some circumstances. (#3509, #3662)
  • Fixed an issue where keys on Freedom Scientific braille displays weren't detected in some circumstances. (#3401, #3662)

NVDA 2013.3rc3 Released

NVDA 2013.3rc3 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2013.3 release.

Changes from rc2 to rc3:

  • Added What's New information for Portuguese.
  • Fixed problems (some rather severe) when a trigger refers to a configuration profile which does not exist. This shouldn't happen under normal conditions, but it might occur due to disk corruption, user error, etc.

NVDA 2013.3rc2 Released

NVDA 2013.3rc2 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2013.3 release.

Changes from rc1 to rc2:

  • When configured to use the Tamil language, gestures are now shown correctly in the Input Gestures dialog. (#3587)
  • Fixed a formatting error in the What's New document.
  • Updated contributors list.

NVDA 2013.3rc1 Released

NVDA 2013.3rc1 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2013.3 release.

NVDA2013.2Released

NV Access would like to announce the release of NVDA 2013.2. To find out more or to download a copy, please see the official NV Access announcement.

As always, we would like to thank all contributors for making this release possible.

NVDA 2013.2rc2 Released

NVDA 2013.2rc2 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2013.2 release.

Changes from rc1 to rc2:

  • NVDA no longer reads the title of browse mode documents twice. (#3446)
  • Fixed a crash in Firefox 3.6. (#3456)
  • Updated translations.

NVDA 2013.2rc1 Released

NVDA 2013.2rc1 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be identical to the final 2013.2 release.

New Release Process

There have been some changes in the way we will be making development and beta code available to the wider community for testing. This is mostly to ensure that new features get the widest amount of testing possible, while at the same time ensuring that we have a codebase of NVDA which is at or near release quality at all times. This will facilitate a faster, smoother release process.

Following is a quick summary of what you should know if you wish to test development or beta code. Please see the Release Process article for full details.

  • Those who have previously tested NVDA betas should now instead consider running master snapshots. Master snapshots will now strive to be of beta quality at all times. They contain code which has been tested for a few weeks and considered to be of acceptable quality. There will no longer be specific beta versions.
  • Those who previously ran master snapshots should now switch to running "next" snapshots. These snapshots will be bleeding edge like the old master snapshots. They contain code which the developer feels is complete, may have been tested by a few users and is therefore ready for wider testing.
  • For those who ran RC versions, there will still be at least one RC version before a release, so please continue testing these.

From now on, translators should only translate the master branch and no other branch. We will ensure that there is at least 2 weeks between a feature branch graduating to master and the availability of an rc.

We thank everyone for helping us to ensure that NVDA is always of the highest quality it can be.

  • Posted: 2013-06-27 14:57
  • Author: jteh
  • Categories: (none)
  • Comments (0)

Explanation of Recent Mailing List Issues

Update: We've since discovered that mail from our server was being blocked by our hosting provider, not external mail providers.

A few weeks ago, we moved all of our services, including our mailing lists, to a new server. While the transition went smoothly for all other services, we have encountered a great deal of trouble with our mailing lists, as some of you have personally experienced.

Our new server was severely rate limited and then blocked completely. For several days, we believed we had been blacklisted by email providers (despite the fact that we weren't listed in any public blacklist), but subsequently discovered that mail was actually being blocked by WowRack, the company which hosts our server. They provided no notification or warning of this and the error message reported contained no identification or other useful information. When asked, they claimed that they do not permit mass mail to be sent from their servers, even though their usage policy includes no clear statement about this. Due to the size of our lists and number of subscribers, our server must send sometimes over 10000 legitimate emails a day.

To resolve this and to avoid similar issues in future, we made the decision to transfer our mailing lists away from our own server to other services.

NV Access doesn't have the resources to provide free technical support. To mitigate this, the nvda-support list was set up a few years ago as a list specifically for free community support. The intent was to provide a list with less traffic than the existing NVDA discussion list on FreeLists by moderating off-topic posters. Unfortunately, some users were unhappy or even outright offended by this moderation, so we removed it. This meant that nvda-support was essentially the same as the NVDA list on FreeLists. Rather than splitting the community between two unmoderated lists with the same purpose, it made sense to merge nvda-support with the NVDA list on FreeLists.

Unfortunately, due to the blacklisting, we had no way of contacting everyone on nvda-support to announce that it was being discontinued and suggest that they subscribe to the new list if they wish. Instead, we moved all existing subscribers to the FreeLists list. We recognised that for whatever reason, some users would be unhappy with this despite the similarity between the two lists, so we sent an email to the FreeLists list at the time of the transfer suggesting that users unsubscribe if they wish.

To complicate matters, some users have been experiencing problems unsubscribing from this list. We apologise for this. If you wish to unsubscribe and are having problems, please email nvda-moderators@freelists.org and request to be removed.

We are in the process of migrating the nvda-dev and nvda-commits lists to SourceForge, as this allows us to transfer the archives for nvda-dev. We are currently awaiting a SourceForge administrator to complete the transfer, as project maintainers aren't able to do this themselves.

Please be assured that we have done our utmost to restore services and to act in what we believe to be the best interest of the NVDA community. Nevertheless, we sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused.

  • Posted: 2013-05-30 13:52 (Updated: 2013-05-31 16:45)
  • Author: jteh
  • Categories: (none)
  • Comments (0)

NVDA 2013.1 Released

NV Access would like to announce the release of NVDA 2013.1. To find out more or to download a copy, please read the Official NV Access Announcement.

We would like to extend our thanks to all contributors for making this release possible.

Thanks for your support.

NVDA 2013.1rc2 Released

NVDA 2013.1rc2 has just been released. This is a release candidate, which means that unless any critical issues are found, this will be almost identical to the final 2013.1 release.

Note that some translations may not yet be updated. They will be updated by the time of the final 2013.1 release.

Changes from rc1 to rc2:

  • OpenOffice and LibreOffice Writer no longer crash when entering text. (#3177)
  • Fixed a problem which sometimes occurred when connecting to or pressing keys on Papenmeier BRAILLEX newer models. (#3174)
  • When updating a previous installation, old eSpeak voices are now removed. (#3181)
  • it is now possible to use browse mode for pages in Internet Explorer 10 when in standards mode; e.g. www.gmail.com login page. (#3151)
  • Updated eSpeak speech synthesizer to 1.47.09. (#3141, #3172)
  • Updated translations.
  • Updated documentation.

Download links and change log: